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Pacific Overtures announces the cast and creative members

August 12, 2004 @ 10:18:10 AM

Roundabout Theatre Company (Todd Haimes, Artistic Director) in association with Gorgeous Entertainment (Kumiko Yoshii, Producer; Michael Wolk, Creative Director) is proud to announce additional cast members and world renowned costume designer Junko Koshino to join B.D. Wong as “Reciter” in Stephen Sondheim’s and John Weidman's Tony® Award-winning musical PACIFIC OVERTURES which will be directed by Amon Miyamoto. Additional material is by Hugh Wheeler and Music Direction is by Paul Gemignani. PACIFIC OVERTURES will begin previews on Friday, November 12th, 2004 and open officially on Thursday, December 2nd, 2004.

The cast will include: Eric Bondoc, Evan D’Angeles, Joseph Anthony Foronda, Yoko Fumoto, Alvin Y. F. Ing, Fred Isozaki, Francis Jue, Darren Lee, Hoon Lee, Michael K. Lee, Ming Lee, Telly Leung, Paolo Montalban, Alan Muraoka, Mayumi Omagari, Hazel Anne Raymundo, Yuka Takara, Kim Varhola and Scott Watanabe. Additional cast members will be announced shortly.

Pacific Overtures will be performed in English with Asian-American actors.

The design team for Pacific Overtures includes: Rumi Matsui (sets), Junko Koshino (costumes), Brian MacDevitt (lights) and Dan Moses Schreier (sound).

Spanning 150 years, Pacific Overtures tells the story of Commodore Matthew Perry's arrival in the “Floating Kingdom” of Nippon in 1853. This landmark musical chronicles the influence America had upon Japan, detailing and dramatizing the westernization of Japanese culture. The style of the musical is based on ancient forms of Japanese theatre such as Kabuki and Noh.

B.D. Wong last performed at the Roundabout off-Broadway in The Tempest at their theatre on 17th St. in October of 1989.

This production of PACIFIC OVERTURES is the second of two Sondheim & Weidman musicals that the Roundabout Theatre Company will produce in 2004. The critically acclaimed production of Sondheim & Weidman’s Assassins, opened on April 22nd, 2004 at Studio 54.

PACIFIC OVERTURES will be the third musical in Studio 54 since Roundabout Theatre Company purchased the venue that will serve as their new home for musical theatre productions. The tenant before Assassins was Roundabout’s Tony® award-winning production of Cabaret which had its final performance on January 4, 2004, having played for six seasons.

STEPHEN SONDHEIM (Music and Lyrics) wrote the music and lyrics for Passion (1994), Assassins (1991), Into the Woods (1987), Sunday in the Park with George (1984), Merrily We Roll Along (1981), Sweeney Todd (1979), Pacific Overtures (1976), The Frogs (1974), A Little Night Music (1973), Follies (1971; revised in London, 1987), Company (1970), Anyone Can Whistle (1964) and A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum (1962), as well as the lyrics for West Side Story (1957), Gypsy (1959), Do I Hear a Waltz? (1965) and additional lyrics for Candide (1973). Side by Side by Sondheim (1976), Marry Me a Little (1981), You're Gonna Love Tomorrow (1983) and Putting It Together (1993/99) are anthologies of his work. He composed the film scores of Stavisky (1974) and Reds (1981) and songs for Dick Tracy (Academy Award, 1990). He also wrote songs for the television production "Evening Primrose" (1966), co-authored, with Anthony Perkins, the film The Last of Sheila (1973) and, with George Furth, the play Getting Away with Murder (1996), and provided incidental music for the plays The Girls of Summer (1956), Invitation to a March (1961) and Twigs (1971). He won Tony Awards for Best Score for a Musical for Passion, Into the Woods, Sweeney Todd, A Little Night Music, Follies and Company. All of these shows won the New York Drama Critics Circle Award, as did Pacific Overtures and Sunday in the Park with George, the latter also receiving the Pulitzer Prize for Drama. Saturday Night (1954), his first professional musical, finally had its New York premiere in 1999 at Second Stage Theatre.

JOHN WEIDMAN (book) wrote the book for Pacific Overtures, (Tony nominations, Best Book and Best Musical) score by Stephen Sondheim, produced and directed on Broadway by Harold Prince. He co-authored, with Timothy Crouse, the new book for Lincoln Center Theater’s revival of Cole Porter’s Anything Goes, (Tony Award, Best Musical Revival); (Olivier Award, Best Musical Production). He wrote the book for Assassins, score by Stephen Sondheim, directed Off-Broadway by Jerry Zaks and in London’s West End (Drama Critics’ Award for Best Musical) by Sam Mendes. He wrote the book for big (Tony nomination, Best Book), score by Richard Maltby, Jr. and David Shire, directed on Broadway by Mike Ockrent, and co-created with choreographer/director Susan Stroman the musical Contact (Tony nomination, Best Book; Tony Award, Best Musical). His new musical, Bounce, score by Stephen Sondheim, direction by Harold Prince, premiered last summer at The Goodman Theatre in Chicago and opened last fall at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. Since 1986, he has written for Sesame Street, receiving eleven Emmy Awards for Outstanding Writing for a Children’s Program. Weidman is President of the Dramatists’ Guild of America. He is a graduate of Yale Law School and lives in New York City with his wife, Lila, and their two children, Laura and Jonathan.

AMON MIYAMOTO (Director). After several years of performing and choreographing as well as studying in London and New York, in 1987 Amon Miyamoto returned to Japan where he made his debut as a director with the original musical play I Got Merman, which received a National Arts Festival Award in 1988. Miyamoto has directed plays, operas, and numerous musical productions including Pam Jems’s Camille, Brad Fraser’s Unidentified Human Remains and the True Nature of Love, Leonald Bernstein’s Candide, Anything Goes, the opera Marriage of Figaro. His debut feature film “BEAT” won critical acclaim at the 1998 Venice Film Festival. His staging of Pacific Overtures was presented at the New National Theatre, Tokyo, the Lincoln Center Festival and the Kennedy Center’s Sondheim Festival, and will be presented next year on Broadway. In 2004, he will be directing Urinetown, Into The Woods, Candide, and the opera Don Giovanni in Japan.

RUMI MATSUI (Set Design). A graduate of Tama Art University, where she majored in Graphic Design, Rumi Matsui joined the Shiki Theatre Company in 1985. In 1988, she studied at Central School of Arts and Design in Britain, where she received an honors degree. In 1989, Matsui returned to Japan and began her career as a stage designer. She has received several awards for her work including the Kisaku Ito Awards for Newcomers (1998), Yomiuri Grand Drama Awards for Best Staff (2000) and Novi Sad International Theater Festival Special Judges’ Award (2001). Her major works include Hitachibo Kaison, Company, The Glass Menagerie, Pacific Overtures, Anna Karenina, Propaganda Day Dream, Moon Palace, Sarah, and Lady from the Sea.

JUNKO KOSHINO (Costume Design) is a designer with tremendous diversity in her breadth of work including industrial design, monuments, sports and uniforms. The epitome of her talent was ‘Madame Butterfly’ in 2002, where Ms. Koshino thoroughly displayed her gift in costume design. Madame Butterfly was performed at the commemorative event of cultural exchange between Korea and Japan, and was acclaimed as the best presentation of the year in classical music. She has also worked extensively with the Fujiwara Opera. Her designs also include: the uniform for Polo World Champion ships, 1990-1991; the uniform for Japanese volleyball team at the Barcelona Olympic Games; the training jacket for the Japanese baseball team Yomiuri Giants; the Keshomawashi (special belt) for the sumo wrestler Takanohana; and park-benches for the 4th EU Japan Festival, Stockholm. Ms. Koshino has created designs for theatrical productions such as ‘Hiraizumi Afire’ (NHK’s original opera production for the Salzburg Opera Festival), ‘The Magic Flute’ (Mayerische Opernhaus, Munich, Germany), and the Bellini Concert sponsored by Italian Institute of Culture, among numerous others.

BRIAN MACDEVITT (Lighting Design). NYC: Fiddler on the Roof, Henry IV, Retreat From Moscow, Long Days JourneyŠ, Nine, Frankie and JohnnyŠ, Into the Woods (Tony Award), Urinetown, Morning's at Seven, Invention of Love, Judgment at Nuremburg, The Dinner Party, Side Show, Diary of Anne Frank, Master Class, Love! Valour! Compassion!, True West, Ride Down Mt. Morgan, et al. Dance: ABT, Tere O'Connor Dance, Lar Lubovitch. Film: Cradle Will Rock. Faculty: Purchase College. Member: Naked Angels. Father: Jake.

DAN MOSES SCHREIER (Sound Design). Broadway: After the Fall, Assassins, Anna In The Tropics, Into The Woods, Topdog/Underdog, Dirty Blonde, Amour, Dance of Death, Major Barbara, The Ride Down Mt. Morgan, The Diary of Anne Frank, The Tempest, Bring in ‘Da Noise, Bring in ‘Da Funk, The Government Inspector, Hedda Gabler. Off Broadway: Homebody/Kabul, Radiant Baby, Spinning Into Butter, Far East, Floyd Collins, Spic-O-Rama, God’s Heart and many others. As a composer, Dan wrote the music for the Broadway productions of Dance Of Death starring Ian Mckellen and Helen Mirren, George C. Wolfe’s production of The Tempest and Daniel Sullivan’s production of Major Barbara. His music/theater piece The Shoulder, written with Dan Hurlin was produced by The Long Wharf Theater/Dance Theater Workshop/Walker Arts Center and is available on Innova Recordings ( Dan has received the 2004 Drama Desk Award for his work on Stephen Sondheim and John Weidman's Assassins and the 2004 LA Ovation Award for his work on August Wilson’s new play Gem Of The Ocean, the 2003 Entertainment Design Award for sustained excellence, two other Drama Desk Awards (Into The Woods, Floyd Collins), and an Obie Award for sustained excellence.

B.D. WONG (Reciter). B.D.’s first book, Following Foo (the electronic adventures of the Chestnut Man) published by HarperCollins, is in bookstores now. It chronicles the dramatic and theatrical E-mail correspondence he initiated with nearly a thousand friends, family, loved ones (and even “forwarded strangers”) after the extremely premature birth of identical twin sons, who were conceived through surrogacy with his partner’s sister’s egg and his sperm. The ordeal brought his family to the foreign and terrifying environment of the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at a world-class teaching hospital. On HBO’s first one hour drama, Oz, Mr. Wong played Father Ray Mukada, Oswald Penitentiary’s conflicted and beleaguered prison chaplain, since its premiere, as well as joining the cast of NBC’s “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” as forensic psychiatrist Dr. George Huang. He has guest starred on “X-Files”, “Sesame Street”, and “Chicago Hope”, as well as appearing in HBO’s film version of Randy Shilts’ book And the Band Played On. He also co-starred with comic Margaret Cho on her series “All-American Girl” as a member of television’s first Asian-American family when the ABC situation comedy aired in 1994. Mr. Wong has been nominated for an Outer Critics Circle Award for his portrayal of General Gong Fei in the off-Broadway play Shanghai Moon. He made his Broadway debut in M. Butterfly, a play by David Henry Hwang. His work, in arguably the breakthrough performance of that season, earned him the Outer Critics Circle Award, Theatre World Award, Drama Desk Award, Clarence Derwent Award, and the coveted Antoinette Perry (Tony) Award. No other actor has won all five of these awards for one role in a Broadway play. In addition to his substantial work Off-Broadway and in American regional theatre, he received critical acclaim for his performance in the Broadway revival of You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown as the intellectual, blanket-dependent Linus. B.D. Wong has worked on more than twenty films, among them: Jurassic Park, The Freshman, The Ref, Executive Decision, and The Salton Sea. Moviegoers may perhaps remember him most vividly for his diverse work in Seven Years in Tibet, Father of the Bride (Parts I and II), and as the voice of the heroic “Shang” in Disney’s animated hit, Mulan. He recently completed filming Stay with director Marc Forster. B.D. Wong was born and raised in San Francisco, and currently resides in New York City.

Eric Bondoc. Off-Broadway: Tokyo Can-Can. Theatre: Comedy of Errors (Guthrie Theatre), M. Butterfly (Theatre Three), Dubunked (Triad Three), Anchors (Chief Diaz), As You Like It (Women of Color Festival), Pacific Overtures (Cincy Playhouse, The Alliance, NSMT), Peter Pan (Music Theatre North), The Nightingale (Eugene O’Neill Theatre Center). Tours: Man of La Mancha, Aristophanes’ The Birds, The Dragon, Peter Pan.

Evan D’Angeles (Observer, Warrior). Broadway: Miss Saigon. National Tours: Rent, Cats. Theater: Fame - The Musical, My Fair Lady, The King & I, West Side Story, A Midsummer Nights Dream, Tommy, A Chorus Line, Phantom. Film: Ramon. TV: “The Jesus Experience”, “101 Dalmations”, “Magical Moments of Disney”.

Joseph Anthony Foronda (Thief, Councilor, Storyteller). Theatre: Pacific Overtures (Donmar Warehouse), Sunday in the Park with George (Chicago Shakespeare Theater), Miss Saigon (Broadway & National Tours), Shogun: The Musical (Broadway), The Fantasticks.

Yoko Fumoto (Tamate). Theatre: The King and I, Lady Be Good, Sound of Music, Calamity Jane. TV: “Kaze”, “The Job”. Film: Changing Lanes, Royal Tenenbaums.

Alvin Y. F. Ing (Shogun's Mother, Old Man, Priest). Theatre: Heading East, Back to Methusaleh, City of Angels, Romeo & Juliet, The Wash, Pacific Overtures. TV: “All American Girl”, “Divorce Court”, “Highway to Heaven”, “Falcon Crest”, “Dynasty”. Film: Smilla’s Sense of Snow, The Final Countdown, Stir Crazy, Little Brother.

Fred Isozaki. Theatre: The King and I, Anything Goes, Pirates of Penzance, Runaways. Opera: The Marriage of Figaro, Cosi fan Tutte, La Cenerentola, Faust, The Quiet American, Il Tabarro, Tosca. TV: “Forensic Files”, Sex and the City”.

Francis Jue (Madame, Dutch Admiral). Broadway: Thoroughly Modern Mille, M. Butterfly. Tour: M Butterfly. Off-Broadway: A Winter’s Tale, Hamlet, Dream True, Pericles, Timon of Athens, King Lear, A Language of Their Own, Richard III, Pacific Overtures.

Darren Lee (American Admiral, Sailor). Broadway: Seussical The Musical, Kiss Me Kate, On the Town, Chicago, Victor Victoria, Guys and Dolls, Miss Saigon, Shogun: The Musical. Tour: Chicago, Guys and Dolls, Fantasia, Musical World of Dick Lee. Off-Broadway: The Chang Fragments, Boys From Syracuse, Call Me Madam, The Petrified Prince, All the World’s a Stage. Film: Hackers, Everyone Say I Love You, Repossesed.

Hoon Lee (Sailor). Broadway: Urinetown, Flower Drum Song. Off-Broadway: Karaoke Show. Other: King and I, Making Tracks, Zanna, Don’t!, Screaming Like a Fool, Remy Martin Concert of Excellence.

Michael K. Lee (Kayama) has been seen on stages across the world. He began his career when he was plucked straight out of Stanford University to originate the role of "Thuy" in the second national touring company of Miss Saigon, and then taking over the role on Broadway before he was 21. On Broadway, he was seen rockin' in Rent (Steve) and Jesus Christ Superstar(Simon Zealotes). Locally, he's worked extensively with East West Players, in productions such as Sweeney Todd; Pacific Overtures; Beijing Spring (for which he received a nomination for Best Actor in a Musical); Heading East; A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Forum; and The World Goes 'Round. Nationally, he helped Theaterworks in the Bay Area receive the Best Musical Production Award for his portrayal of "Manjiro" in their production of Pacific Overtures; in Chicago, he helped Barry Manilow with the world premiere production of his work, performing in the five-person revue, Could It Be Magic? The Barry Manilow Songbook; in Seattle, he's won accolades for his lead performances in the Asian American Rock Musical Making Tracks and a musical adaptation of Ang Lee's Film The Wedding Banquet. Internationally, he's worked opposite Lea Salonga in the Singapore Repertory Theater Company's Production of They're Playing Our Song.He has made several appearances in television, most recently guest spots on “The Shield”, “Arliss” and “7 Days.” He has made several independent films. An avid writer in his own right, he has written four full length screenplays, and hopes to see one in production in 2005. Upcoming projects include revisiting his two favorite works for revivals: Pacific Overtures on Broadway with the Roundabout Theater Company in the fall and winter 2004; and Making Tracks at San Jose Repertory Theater in Spring 2005. He currently is working on his first album, A Voice For Voices, featuring songs from Asian American Musicals. He dedicates his performance in Mame to his family and friends.

Ming Lee (Councilor #2). Broadway: Miss Saigon. Off-Broadway: Chinese Waiter at the Funeral of His Daughter, Fragrant Harbour, The Last Hand Laundry in Chinatown, Journey to the West. TV: “Law and Order, SVU”. Film: Who is Albert Woo?, Return to Paradice, Kun Dun, Are you Afraid of the Dark?, Foreign Ghosts.

Telly Leung (Boy, Observer, Sailor, Samurai Companion). Broadway: Flower Drum Song (Ta u/s, original Broadway cast, national tour). Favorite roles include Bobby in Company (directed by Billy Porter), Simon in

Jesus Christ Superstar (Sacramento Music Circus), Lun Tha in The King and I with Lou Diamond Phillips (North Carolina Theatre), Thuy in Miss Saigon (Pittsburgh CLO), Seth/Shem in Children of Eden (Ford's Theatre) and Mike in Zanna, Don't! (concert). He holds a BFA from Carnegie Mellon University. Thanks to mom, dad and the boys at Bauman.

Paolo Montalban (Manjiro). Broadway: The King and I. Theatre: Rogers and Hammerstein’s Cinderella (Paramount Theatre and Kennedy Center), Man of La Mancha (National Tour), Nine (Paper Mill Playhouse). Film: Cinderella, The Great Raid. TV: “Mortal Kombat Conquest”.

Alan Muraoka. Broadway: Miss Saigon, The King and I, My Favorite Year, Shogun, Mail. National Tours: Miss Saigon, M. Butterfly, Anything Goes. Film: It Could Happen to You. TV: “Sesame Street”, “As the World Turns”, “General Hospital”, “Santa Barbara”.

Mayumi Omagari. Theatre: Miss Saigon, The King and I, Cats, Beauty and the Beast, Joseph and the Amazing…, Starlight Express. Theatre (Japan): Zorba the Greek, Midsummer Nights Dream, Much Ado about Nothing, As You Like It, Anne of Green Gables.

Hazel Anne Raymundo (Shogun's Wife). Theatre: Miss Saigon (1st National Tour), Jesus Christ Superstar (European Tour), The King and I, Making Tracks. Live Concerts: 2002 Concert of Excellence, Screaming Like a Fool, 2001 Concert of Excellence, Cabaret at B. Smith’s.

Yuka Takara is originally from Okinawa, Japan. She was recently seen playing the role of Luisa in The Fantasticks at the Music Circus in Sacramento. National Tour: Flower Drum Song (Mei-Li) Broadway Orginal Casts: MAMMA

MIA! (Lisa u/s) Flower Drum Song (Mei-Li u/s) Other NY Theatre: City Center Encores! Hair & Bye, Bye, Birdie; Flower Drum Song Workshop, Radio City Music Hall's Christmas Spectacular. TV: “ED”, “L&O: SVU”.

Kim Varhola is honored and excited to be part of this production. Broadway: Thoroughly Modern Millie (Gloria); Rent (Alexi Darling); Flower Drum Song. Regional: Flower Drum Song (Mark Taper and TUTS); No No Nanette (Goodspeed); Redhead (Goodspeed). Kim is currently obtaining her MA in Cinema Studies at NYU. BS in Theatre from Northwestern University.

Scott Watanabe (Fisherman, Russian Admiral). Broadway: The Phantom of the Opera. Regional: Camelot, The Prince and the Pauper, Pacific Overtures, Evita, The Phantom of the Opera, Candide and more. Television: “Law & Order, CI”, “Tour of Duty”, “China Beach”.

Pacific Overtures opened at the Winter Garden on January 11, 1976 under the direction of Harold Prince. The Tony Award-winning production ran for 193 performances.

Roundabout Theatre Company productions are made possible, in part, with public funds from the National Endowment for the Arts; New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation; New York State Council on the Arts; and New York City Department of Cultural Affairs. American Airlines is the official airline of Roundabout Theatre Company. The Westin Hotel is the official hotel of the Roundabout Theatre Company.

Paolo Montalban website: